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“Mesmerized: Priceless "Device Time-out"”

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Belmond Villa San Michele
Ranked #1 of 11 Hotels in Fiesole
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 5 February 2014

In your life, if you are lucky like us, you find yourself so engrossed in a scene or a moment that you "lose yourself." Your brain has taken a "device time-out" like a computer that is having issues. Sitting in La Loggia, the restaurant that is essentially an open air balcony, staring down to Florence and the Domo and some smoke billowing from a house on the hillside-my device took a t time out. The scene is breathtakingly indescribable and you have to look through the beautiful grounds and bright red flowers around you to even get to that point. The smell combines fresh flowers and centuries old walls and grounds.

We got upgrades on our rooms so they were in the hillside with a similar view of Florence. You have to walk up some substantial stairs so if you have challenges with that - this could affect your room choice.

The wine selection is extraordinary and the food is as good as Italy has to offer. The service is formal, but not pretentious. They custom made some entrees for some of us that were on special diets. I had a pasta, off menu, with various sea food that I want to have again soon and I got help pairing it with an extraordinary Brunello de Montelcino. Don't be afraid to ask for what you want or be intimidated by the formality.

But my favorite part - the piano player at the back of the restaurant. We sang fun songs together with our group of 6 while we sipped champagne and toasted my wife's birthday.

I know the 3 days there were expensive - but honestly at checkout - I just folded the bill and put it in my pocket. That is the highest compliment I can give.

Room Tip: We stayed i the hillside rooms which have great views but are a bit of a walk. They are close to th...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank cashnickerson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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215 - 221 of 447 reviews

Reviewed 5 November 2013

I always wanted to stay at this hotel because of its reputation, but could not justify the cost. This year we spent one night here when our favorite hotel closed for the season. The view is beautiful and the room was lovely. The dining room was a disappointment. We were wedged at dinner between a family with a screaming child and smoking parents and a group of loutish Russians who were smoking like chimneys and totally disruptive of our dinner. There was no attempt to do anything for us so the dinner, which may have been ok was totally ruined. Staff was generally professional but impersonal. At this level I think a hotel should be exceptional and not indifferent. We agreed we would not be inclined to return. Hideous mustard colored towels and robes.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank jmcneil771
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MNovella, Direttore generale at Belmond Villa San Michele, responded to this reviewResponded 13 November 2013

Dear jmcneil771,
Thank you very much for taking the time to review Villa San Michele. We are deeply sorry if your experience was somehow spoiled and it did not meet your expectations. We would have done everything that was in our hands to satisfy you if we had knew your disappointment.
Unfortunately we cannot change a situation that belongs to the past but we really look forward to have the chance to welcoming you back soon and to make you leave with a better feeling.

Best regards,

Marco Novella
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 October 2013

Peaceful with great views and wonderful attentive service. If you don´t care to be away from the center of Florence, this is your perfect hideaway. After staying here and Ritz in Madrid I am becoming an Orient Express fan.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Alex J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 October 2013

This hotel is simply the best! The staff is so friendly and helpful, they upgraded the in-laws room as well as ours, we were in the garden level suites and I have to tell you the bathroom was larger than most hotel rooms in europe! we were only here for 2 days but they were the best two days hotel wise of our two week trip! I highly recommend this hotel if you've got the bucks! I feel very fortunate to have been able to stay at such a luxury hotel!

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank d1zzyg1rl1968
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 October 2013

From the moment we entered the long driveway, lined with trees and lush sculptured shrubs, and welcomed by friendly, attentive staff, our entire stay at the hotel was nothing short of magical.
The elegantly decorated suite featured the conveniences that you would expect from a luxury hotel. But it was the trimmings for the kids that really made it stand out. The kids were given cute t-shirts and a stuffed toy lion to match the mascot of the kids club, and to match mummy and daddy, they had their own kid-sized slippers and bathrobes. So cute!
The motorised recessed television was neatly stored in the end of the master bed and could be summoned with a press of a button. But the bathroom was definitely the showstopper for the adults. Featuring double marble vanities and an enormous walk-in shower room, it was the largest I’ve ever seen anywhere in the world.
Villa San Michele really captured our attention as they cater for families with a daily kids program called the Smile Club. Running from 10:30am to 5:30pm for 4-12 year olds, it is perfect for parents who desire a little kid-free quiet time or to take a romantic day trip around Florence. Our kids loved it!
Breakfast was served each morning in The Loggia Restaurant, situated on a terrace overlooking Florence. Along with a buffet spread of fresh fruit, cold meats, pastries, yogurts, juices and cereals, a hot breakfast could be ordered from the menu. And the dinner & lunch - to die for!
A convenient complimentary shuttle operated by the hotel transports guests to the centre of Florence and back on a regular basis.
A luxury hotel would not be complete without a lavish swimming pool. In this case, an outdoor heated pool overlooks the terraced garden and scenic Arno Valley.
I highly recommend a stay here, even with the kids it is truly romantic. You can read more and see all our pictures on our blog.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank ExplorewithErin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 October 2013

Orient Express do holidays very well, when combining this with the natural beauty of Tuscany and the joys Leonardo and his contemporaries, it makes for a very special combination. When you are stood by the pool or in the lemon gardens looking into the horizon, over the hills and cast your eyes across the Duomo and Florence itself, it feels good to be alive and that you are blessed to be able to experience such a spectacular setting.

The food in La Loggia is excellent and the work of a proud and diligent head chef. The service is very good, particularly thanks to Vittorio, the Food and Beverage manager and Adriano on the front desk. The rooms are classical.

There are other hotels which may have been more recently refurbished such as the Four Seasons and Il Salviatino but the location, charm and history of this converted monastery do make this establishment quite unique. It is great to be able to walk around Florence and amble back to your hotel by foot, gelato in hand. However, a hot Summer's day, the cool breeze across the gardens accompanied by one of Villa San Michele's amazing Bellini's, this is after all the sister to the Cipriani in Venice of Harry's Bar fame, makes for an endearing respite from the heat and the wonders of the city are still only ten minutes away.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Probablynotajudge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 October 2013

The grounds of this 600 year old property are above 5 star. The biggest highlight would have to be dinner outside overlooking all of Florence for an Incredible meal…top5 all time. Rooms in the hotel are small but the suites in the garden are far better but far more expensive so you choose. The reason i say for three days max is because it is annoying getting into town whether on their free shuttle or via taxi....traffic even in this off season was tough. They do their best with a friendly driver, a/c, cold waters etc but split up the trip with a 2-3 days at san Michele and enjoy the property, pool and restaurant and then book another hotel where you can rollout the door into cafes, museums shops et al.

To qualify the review I am a 35 year old traveler who has been to 52 countries in my life. I started out on semester at sea in the fall of 1998 and got the travel bug then followed that up with backpacking europe in 2000 for two months. Left those rougher travels behind since 2000 and have saved up to enjoy properties like this one ever since.

Room Tip: we chose the best of the smaller rooms in the hotel as we did not plan to be in the room much at all...
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  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank DStrips98
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Belmond Villa San Michele

Address: Via Doccia 4, 50014, Fiesole, Italy
Phone Number:
Region: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Florence > Fiesole
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 11 Hotels in Fiesole
Price Range: £427 - £1,107 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Belmond Villa San Michele 5*
Number of rooms: 46
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A short distance from the centre of Florence, Belmond Villa San Michele is housed in a 15th-century monastery with a façade designed by Michelangelo. It is surrounded by a large, wooded park and lush terraced gardens boasting magnificent views of the city and the Arno Valley below. The 45 bedrooms and suites are simple, peaceful and elegant while the Renaissance splendour of Florence is a mere 15 minutes away with the complimentary shuttle service, running every 20 minutes. La Loggia Restaurant provides a unique dining venue where guests can enjoy their lunch or dinner, based on Italian and Tuscan cuisine, while admiring the view over Florence. For a light lunch or a snack, the Pool Restaurant, situated directly by the hilltop panoramic swimming pool, is the ideal place. For food lovers, the renown Cooking School offers hands-on lessons to learn how to prepare the best Italian specialties. A Kids' Club and a dedicated Kids' Concierge are available to make the stay of younger guests truly unforgettable. The new Davanzati Room offers privacy and tranquillity thanks to its exclusive location, and a spacious terrace with a view for small banquets, cocktails and coffee breaks. Ideal for hosting meetings, launches and presentations, it also serves as a space for banquets for up to 100 people. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Villa San Michele By Orient-Express Hotel Fiesole
Hotel San Michele
San Michele Hotel
Belmond Villa San Michele Fiesole, Province Of Florence, Italy

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